A woman in her own right - Taimi Iileka-Amupanda

16 April 2021 | People

Jeanette Diergaardt

Having started at the bottom, Taimi Iileka-Amupanda is now one of the directors of Sisa Namandje & Co.

Iileka-Amupanda is no stranger to administrative, banking, commercial, communications and family law. Besides having a degree in law, Taimi manages to keep the ball rolling while continuing her studies.

When asked how she juggles it all, her response was, “Some things do slip through the cracks but thanks to my support system I can manage.”

Humble, down to earth and friendly, the 30-year-old powerhouse is a force to be reckoned with. Being a director at 30 requires grit. The steps taken are of hard work and determination. The process of becoming a director at one of the biggest law firms in Namibia can take up to five years and is no easy journey, filled with mountains of paperwork and admin.

“The amount of work does not decrease but only increases and your efforts must match, as you have a standard to maintain while proving worthy of the responsibility entrusted to you.”

The Journey

Iileka-Amupanda started her law journey in 2010 doing a Baccalaureus Juris (B Juris) degree at the University of Namibia (Unam) and thereafter completing a Bachelor of Law (LLB). After completion of her practical legal studies to become an admitted legal practitioner, Iileka-Amupanda was admitted to practice in the High Court in 2016, marking the end of her candidacy at Sisa Namandje & Co Inc.

Her interest in the law was sparked by wanting to become the female version of Alan Shore in the popular American TV show ‘Boston Legal’. Iileka-Amupanda says although television shows are far different from reality, watching ‘Suits’ and other legal shows motivated and kept her going through her studies.

Besides the extensive reading she has to do as a lawyer, Iileka-Amupanda still appreciates a good book. One of her all-time favourites is ‘Becoming’ by Michelle Obama. Her current read is by Dikgang Moseneke, ‘All Rise: A Judicial Memoir’.

After Hours

What is her secret hobby that not a lot of people know about? She used to write poetry and won an award in a national poetry competition when she was in school. “Strangely enough, I think in poetry,” she says.

Gardening is her other hobby. She grows vegetables and herbs in her garden. The love for gardening was inspired by her father, as he used to have a garden at home.

The Ultimate Destination

Having been an avid debater at university, she has enjoyed a lot of travelling over the years and after all the hard work that goes into her work, she dreams of more travels when it will be safe again to do so. Her destination of choice? Countries on the African continent including Mozambique and the island of Zanzibar, and she would like to explore Jamaican culture.

Hard Work

Working for one of the biggest law firms in Namibia means working for one of the most well-known criminal lawyers in Namibia, Sisa Namandje, who she looks up to as an example of the hard work and compassion that is required to be a successful lawyer.

For Iileka-Amupanda no case is too difficult. Some are “complex and diverse in their needs and certain cases require more energy than the rest,” though.

Her advice to aspiring lawyers is: “Don’t do it for the money; that should be secondary. You must be ready to serve others with a heart full of compassion and understanding, a willingness to work hard and empathy for clients.”

10 FACTS ABOUT TAIMI IILEKA-AMUPANDA

1. She is a mother and a wife.

2. She loves gardening for food production.

3. She enjoys poetry and reading books.

4. She is an avid debater.

5. She enjoys worship music.

6. She became an admitted legal practitioner in 2016.

7. She studied at the University of Namibia.

8. She enjoys travelling.

9. She runs to keep fit.

10. She is a feminist.